19/11/2013 Daily Politics


19/11/2013

Jo Coburn has the top political stories of the day, including the government's response to the Stafford Hospital scandal and calls for airport expansion.


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Transcript


LineFromTo

Afternoon, folks, welcome to the Daily Politics.

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Hospitals in England will have to publish details of their staffing

:00:44.:00:47.

levels from next year, as the Health Secretary makes a series of changes

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to improve patient care. The SNP says independence would

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boost Scotland's economy. We'll talk to the Scottish Finance Minister

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John Swinney. Should companies be forced to have

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more women on their boards? We'll debate a plan being discussed by

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MEPs which would set a target of 40%.

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And, we'll have the latest on the crack-smoking Toronto mayor who

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refuses to step down. Everybody has skeletons in their closet. Mine have

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been exposed. If the council wants to strip me of all my powers, do

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whatever they want to do. It would never happen here, of

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course! All that in the next hour. With us

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for the whole programme today is the radio presenter, Conservative

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blogger and political publisher Iain Dale. Welcome back to the Daily

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Politics. Let's start with the latest on the

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Canadian mayor who has admitted to smoking crack cocaine. Yesterday,

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members of Toronto City Council voted to strip Rob Ford of most of

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his official powers because he's refused to resign. And he's showing

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no signs of going quietly. He's declared war on the city council,

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and took to the airwaves last night on his own TV show.

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Everybody has skeletons in their closet. Mine have been exposed. I

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can't speak for anyone else but if the council was to strip me of all

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my powers, do what they ever -- do what ever they want to do. They have

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their rights. I think it is wrong, it is illegal. But the people will

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have their say on October the 27th. A return on every phone call in my

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office. I will continue to go to people front door to serve them.

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He is really fighting to stay on. Where does this end?

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If he was in this country, he would have gone weeks ago. Because of what

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he did. These are not minor transgressions. Watching that film,

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I thought, is that the head of the Co-op bank? There is a remarkable

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physical similarity. We have a fairly colourful London

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Mayor, can you imagine if he got up to those shenanigans? It does seem

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remarkable he is still there. He doesn't see the writing on the

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wall. Do you think the case he is making

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that people can have their say, he is an elected official, he has

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admitted what he has done. But now, he is clean.

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Perhaps he should put himself up for re-election. He might actually win,

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he still has a remarkable level of support among the people. He wants

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to come across as a man of the people.

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What you think of the idea that he would like to run for prime

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minister. We think of Canada as a boring

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country! One of our reporters said, for the

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quiet, genteel city of Toronto, this is a shock, they have never seen

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anything like it. I interviewed a Toronto radio

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journalist. He asked if this was big news in England. He was surprised by

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it. Word is surprised by him? A maverick personality. This has come

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out in the last few months. Has it taken the city by surprise, they did

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not know their city mayor. He is a larger than life character.

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Mavericks do well in elections, we know that from London. But he should

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go. It's time for our daily quiz.

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According to one well-informed columnist, Ed Miliband's team have a

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nickname for Ed Balls's team. So what are they known as?

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Is it: The bandits? The cowboys? The pirates?

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The clowns? At the end of the show, Iain will

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give us the correct answer. I'm sure you know. You reckon?

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The report of the Francis Inquiry into the failings at Mid

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Staffordshire NHS Trust, was published in February this year. In

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March, the government set out its initial response. Today, the Health

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Secretary Jeremy Hunt is making a further statement to Parliament,

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which will explain what the government plans to do in response

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to Francis's 290 recommendations. The aim is to bring about a radical

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change in the culture of care in England's hospitals, as well as

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making reforms to how they are run. At the weekend, Mr Hunt talked about

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creating a new criminal offence of' "wilful neglect" for medics, which

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would be punishable by a jail term. But the BMA, which represents

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doctors, warned that it could create a "climate of fear", and discourage

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whistle-blowers. There will also be a new duty on doctors and nurses to

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report "near misses" when patients have been put at risk.

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But perhaps the biggest change will be on staff levels. Francis found

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that a "chronic shortage of staff, particularly nursing staff, was

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largely responsible for the substandard care" at Stafford

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Hospital. So, from April, hospitals in England will have to publish

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staffing levels on a monthly basis, on a publicly available website.

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This morning, the Chief Nursing Officer from NHS England, Jane

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Cummings, explained how that might work.

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What we want people to do is to use evidence to determine what the

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staffing should be on a ward by ward basis. And to talk about that

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publicly, to publish whether they are meeting those staffing levels.

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If they are not, to describe what they are doing about it. The key is

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making sure we give patients and their relatives and carers the

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confidence we are able to provide safe care.

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With us is Janet Davies from the Royal College of Nursing. And, in

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Salford, Jennie Forcett from the pressure group Patients First.

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Is it a good idea We know more than one qualified

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nurse for eight patients, more than that is dangerous. Within that

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land, sometimes less, it depends on the patient. The important thing is

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it needs to be based on evidence. It depends on the speciality and tap

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the patient. Do you agree, would you like to see

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those ratios put in place? One nurse to eight patients,

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evidence shows that is where patient care starts to become compromised.

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You have to look at the dependency. That can change from day, to

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night-time, depending if you are caring for the elderly who have

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greater needs, in maintaining their care needs, or paediatrics. Also,

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you are looking at patients who have high dependency because of their

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illness. Patients on intensive care, it needs to be properly looked at. I

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believe that the government have now asked the experts to look at this.

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How many nurses will we need? We need to work out how many is

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right for each hospital ward first. We can't give a total number for

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England. We are short staffed. It is also the vacancies. This puts the

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attention of the trust board and managers on to what matters. The c/o

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the patients, resources, nursing numbers, to ensure that care is safe

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and beyond safe -- the care of the patients.

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It is interesting to hear that it is one nurse to eight patients which is

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worth caring starts to become unsafe. Labour says there are 6000

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fewer nurses than when they were in power.

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We know that posts have been lost. On top of that, the vacancies that

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are currently in England are about 20,000. We are very short of

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nurses. It will go some way to redressing the balance, but we need

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high recruitment of nurses. There need to be 20,000 more nurses

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according to the Royal College of Nursing. 20,000 vacancies, posts

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which are already there but not filled.

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The Francis Report did talk about chronic shortages in some areas in

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the health service. And a culture in hospitals. Will more nurses

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necessarily deliver it transformed culture of caring in hospitals?

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You mentioned earlier on about the duty of staff to report near

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misses. That is already embedded within the NHS, that has been around

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for many years. However, staff fear that if they raise concerns, then

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they will be targeted. And so they remain silent. And, we have had many

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nurses and doctors who have come to Patients first who have raised

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concerns about patient safety. And have suffered significantly, boast

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them and their career, and their families. We feel it is critical

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that, in order for the government to truly understand the culture that is

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within the NHS, is to look at cases, whistle-blowing cases where

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staff have been stopped from working.

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Iain Dale, will this encourage people to mop -- come forward?

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You would hope it would. This is partly about numbers, and the

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standard of compassion of care. There have been too many stories

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about the lack of compassion shown by some nursing staff. It is also

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about continuity of care. My mother was in hospital three weeks last

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year, she died at the end of it. At the end of each week, there were

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never the same nurses. In three weeks, she saw over 100 nurses.

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It is sadly not about numbers only. Numbers are the basis. Then we can

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do some of the other things. Because we don't have the right numbers of

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staff, we seek agency and temporary staff. A different person every

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day. If you have a really good team that is constant, you have a chance

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of really getting the care right, a better attitude. The ward sister is

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there to manage care and communicate. It's not just about

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numbers. But you have situations. I remember

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our experience, it is difficult to make complaints because you worry. A

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mother asked me not to complain because she was worried the staff

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would take it out on her. That is a worrying attitude. We say

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to nurses, that should never be the case. When people complain to the

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nurses, they really want to make it better. There is that fear, because

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you are vulnerable as a patient, at the mercy of everything going on.

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You are not well, in your pyjamas, invulnerable situation.

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The doctors may understand but are powerless.

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It is about how we put power back so that care can be provided. We can

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never defend poor care where it is wilful. Quite often, we don't have

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the resources or people, and it is difficult to provide compassionate

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care. Do you think, with the publication

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of staffing levels, hospital by hospital, we will seek hospitals

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fall below the expected standards? There have to be the financials

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resources to meet that demand. It will be critical. It is not just

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reporting numbers. It is how many registered nurses are on the ward.

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If you are going to include non-qualified staff in those

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numbers, that is not really a true reflection. We have concentrated on

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numbers. These skill mix is critical, making sure you have the

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people with the right skills to deliver safe, compassionate care in

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a timely manner. So says a campaign group hoping to

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stop politicians dithering about infrastructure decisions. Boris

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Johnson recently reiterated his support for more airport capacity at

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a speech to the CBI. I welcome the recent statement that we need more

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runway space in the south-east of this country. Its progress. But we

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need to go further and to accept there's no point in adding runway

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space at airports where it will not be used. We already have capacity at

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Gatwick. We have spare capacity at Stansted. But what is needed is a

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hub capacity. Adam Fleming is outside Parliament with a more. I'm

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joined by two people who got -- have got very strong views on this. They

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are John Allen, the chair of Dixons Medi retailer, who is part of this

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campaign group, and Nick Faraday, from the campaign group, Airport

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Watch. The UK needs more airport capacity, particularly hub capacity,

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to support economic growth. We need politicians to read the report and

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make a decision and get on with it. Were not taking a view on what the

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solution should be, simply that the politicians should address it and

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show some leadership. We have talked about the committee chaired by

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Howard Davies looking at the long-term issue. He is not going to

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report until 2015, after the election. Is that to report until

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2015, after the election. Is that too far in the future for you? It

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would be better if it were soon, and when he gives the -- but when he

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gives his report, I think that is still soon enough. Whatever decision

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is taken, it will take some years to implement. The sooner we start, the

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sooner we finished. 2014 would be better than 2015. But 2015 is better

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than nothing. If we don't do anything, if the country parks the

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issue, what is the worst case scenario? We will lose a share of

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trade. We will lose a share of inward investment. We will lose a

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share of tourism. All others are important to the economy. This is a

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broader issue than just business. We need is a port a growing

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population. -- we need to support. We may go through the town of years

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in future that we have seen in the recent past. So, next, you are

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putting the economy at risk. No, we're not. You have just heard

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aren't unfounded assertions about how we need more airport capacity to

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grow the economy. There is no evidence that shortage of airport

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capacity is harming the economy at the moment. There is no evidence

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that it will, for a long time, even by 2030. There will still be spare

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capacity at some of London's airports. There is no immediate

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problem. Therefore, the politicians will be advised not to be panicked

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or urged into action or decisions on the basis of just assertions and

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hype about a shortage of their cup -- airport capacity. They said to be

:19:06.:19:17.

an 80% increase by 2030. National Grid there is said to be. -- there

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is said to be an 80% increase by 2030. We have authoritative

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forecasts up to 2050. Issues they would be virtually no shortage until

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2050. -- it shows. I would rather not trust chomping -- something from

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a campaign trip. That argument overlooks the importance of hubs. If

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every runway was used to capacity, there will be more capacity. That is

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not what travellers want. The travellers can go more conveniently

:20:06.:20:08.

through Amsterdam or Paris, they will do. Surprise surprise, our

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capacity will cope because people will be going elsewhere. It is

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equally an assertion that we don't need additional capacity. I travel

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on business and I see what is happening in the rest of the world.

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I see that we are in danger of losing a share. This is an

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enhancement about the future, not now. But the decisions need to be

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made soon if we are going to be ready when capacity crunch arrives.

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I know your organisation doesn't have a view of the future option

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that you should plan for, but do you have a personal view? I am content

:20:46.:20:51.

to wait for the report. The commission are going to study this

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objectively. They are going to address all the issues that need to

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be thought about. They will come up with a considered view. I am happy

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to wait, studied the conclusions and then come to a view once I have read

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what they have to say. I do not have an entrenched position. I know we

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need more capacity. How it is delivered, there are a number of

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ways. The important thing is that whatever the decision, politicians

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should make it an lead and stick with it. That is important for

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employment, among other things. We have a lot of young, unemployed

:21:28.:21:32.

people. The right investment is going to help that. It is not just

:21:33.:21:40.

an issue for the south-east. Nick, you can have the last word. Do you

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think the politicians are on your side or the side of businesses? It

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is a mixed bag. Some of the politicians around Heathrow are

:21:53.:21:54.

concerned about their constituents, the people who live around the

:21:55.:22:00.

impact of noise and air pollution. Those that are concerned with fraud

:22:01.:22:03.

issues are concerned about the impact of climate change. The

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government's own committee has pointed out that we can't simply

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expand aviation indefinitely and build new airports and runways if we

:22:13.:22:16.

are going to take climate change seriously. That has got to be looked

:22:17.:22:19.

at. The Davies commission is going to do that. The politicians will

:22:20.:22:26.

consider that. While I agree that it needs to be looked at and they care

:22:27.:22:31.

decision needs to be made, the decision isn't that we just go ahead

:22:32.:22:35.

and build new airports. In particular, we have just heard that

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the argument is going on to, we need a hub. Hubs are for people changing

:22:46.:22:49.

planes. That is not a fundamental requirement. We need sufficient

:22:50.:22:54.

capacity for people to fly to and from this country. There is no

:22:55.:22:59.

evidence we don't have it at the moment. There is another two years

:23:00.:23:08.

before a decision. That is the problem. There is still

:23:09.:23:11.

so much time, Iain Dale, before a decision is made. It is a massive

:23:12.:23:19.

political issue. That is the scandal. We're going to go into the

:23:20.:23:22.

next election not knowing what people think about airport capacity.

:23:23.:23:29.

20 years ago, in the halcyon days, they launched a report into capacity

:23:30.:23:36.

in the south-east. Nothing has happened since then. Leticia is all

:23:37.:23:40.

parties have let us down. It really is a scandal. -- politicians of all

:23:41.:23:49.

parties. What should the Conservatives say?

:23:50.:23:56.

They need to say, well, there is going to be an interim 40 in

:23:57.:24:00.

December, they need to give an indication of what their

:24:01.:24:04.

preferences. -- for an interim report in December. Somebody has got

:24:05.:24:10.

to make a decision. Otherwise we are going to become a second rate

:24:11.:24:15.

aviation power. Yesterday, the Institute for Fiscal

:24:16.:24:19.

Studies told us about the economic consequences of Scotland deciding to

:24:20.:24:23.

leave the union and they painted a gloomy picture. The IFS said an

:24:24.:24:27.

independent Scotland would need to raise taxes, cut spending, or both,

:24:28.:24:31.

to keep their public finances in check. Today the Scottish government

:24:32.:24:36.

has released its own paper offering a different view, surprise,

:24:37.:24:40.

surprise. Is that Scotland can afford independence if it is given

:24:41.:24:44.

control of economic policy. Let's talk now to Scotland's finance

:24:45.:24:48.

minister, John Swinney, who joins us from Dundee. Welcome to the

:24:49.:24:53.

programme. Can I start by asking you, the Scottish government is

:24:54.:24:57.

going to get more tax powers under the forthcoming act. Why, in your

:24:58.:25:02.

view, will that not be enough? For the simple reason that once we get

:25:03.:25:06.

all of the control that is vested in the Scotland act, which comes into

:25:07.:25:12.

force in 2015, we will have control over about 15% of taxes raised in

:25:13.:25:16.

Scotland. We don't think that is nearly enough, for the simple reason

:25:17.:25:20.

that if you take the current situation, Scottish economic

:25:21.:25:23.

performance is outclassing the rest of the UK but we don't get the

:25:24.:25:26.

revenue benefit of the fact that we are generating more economic

:25:27.:25:31.

activity and presiding over more economic activity than we were

:25:32.:25:37.

before. What the Scotland act brings is further taxation but not nearly

:25:38.:25:43.

the opportunity to create the economy we need to create to

:25:44.:25:47.

generate opportunities for our people. But economically, the IFS

:25:48.:25:52.

said an independent school and would face a fiscal gap of 2% of national

:25:53.:25:56.

income compared to just 0.8% for the UK. That is looking over the next 50

:25:57.:26:02.

years. That would require significant spending cuts or tax

:26:03.:26:07.

rises. You accept that? It is important to bear in mind that the

:26:08.:26:14.

context of the IFS report was that they were setting other proposition

:26:15.:26:17.

about Scotland continuing on the current structure. It was in

:26:18.:26:22.

projecting what could happen if some of the measures that we set up this

:26:23.:26:25.

morning were implemented by an independent government. The IFS

:26:26.:26:33.

analysis isn't a surprise. The analysis about the UK is that the UK

:26:34.:26:37.

will be Endeavour set for the next 50 years. What Scotland has got the

:26:38.:26:42.

opportunity to do mid-September is to get out of that situation and to

:26:43.:26:46.

start to take decisions ourselves. -- next September. Even on that

:26:47.:26:58.

basis, though, use API versus using a context that disadvantages

:26:59.:27:02.

Scotland, but actually that is not true. They said to me that you can

:27:03.:27:09.

make a difference and do things better. What is highly likely is

:27:10.:27:13.

that you could do in better things to growth to upset -- offset the

:27:14.:27:18.

challenges you are going to face. You could do things that would be

:27:19.:27:23.

more efficient and perhaps more money, more growth for Scotland. But

:27:24.:27:28.

it still wouldn't meet the gap because the oil revenues are

:27:29.:27:30.

diminishing and you have an ageing population. Scotland, on ageing

:27:31.:27:39.

populations, has a better dependency ratio than the rest of the UK until

:27:40.:27:45.

the 20 30s. We have got to make sure we take action to create the best

:27:46.:27:52.

conditions going forward. Some of the measures we set out today, for

:27:53.:27:56.

example we spoke about the measure to increase economic activity by

:27:57.:28:01.

better childcare services. If we increase the level of economic

:28:02.:28:05.

activity in Scotland by just 1%, it creates over 20,000 new jobs in

:28:06.:28:08.

Scotland, which contributes to our economic future. People have got to

:28:09.:28:14.

consider the depth of analysis we have set out today in the context of

:28:15.:28:18.

the current economic performance of Scotland, which has got better since

:28:19.:28:22.

Gollum was a devolved country because we have more control of the

:28:23.:28:31.

issues here. -- since Scotland. But you say it yourself, there are

:28:32.:28:35.

possibilities. These are projections that you are putting forward. The

:28:36.:28:38.

Scottish economy would have to perform unbelievably well in order

:28:39.:28:43.

to offset the disadvantages of those oil revenues diminishing over time.

:28:44.:28:50.

Do you say the FS is wrong? Are the figures wrong? There is a broader

:28:51.:29:00.

context. I understand that... Look at the comparison of the last 30

:29:01.:29:04.

years of small, independent European countries. Their growth rates have

:29:05.:29:08.

been about 0.6% higher than the rates in Scotland. If we took the

:29:09.:29:13.

same level of growth, the Scottish economy would be billions of pounds

:29:14.:29:19.

larger than today. What that says to me is that we are able to deliver a

:29:20.:29:24.

better economic future if we have the control of the economic levers

:29:25.:29:27.

that will put Scotland at an advantage. What we have demonstrated

:29:28.:29:32.

since devolution is that we can exercise control more effectively in

:29:33.:29:36.

Scotland. We have to do it across broader ranges of issues. Will you

:29:37.:29:42.

stick to your spending commitments, if Scotland goes independent? We

:29:43.:29:46.

will stick to our existing commitments. There is no facility

:29:47.:29:53.

for tax rises in Scotland. We need to improve economic performance of

:29:54.:29:57.

the country and get Scotland out of the austerity agenda that all of the

:29:58.:30:00.

UK parties seem to have signed up to. We believe there's a way to

:30:01.:30:05.

encourage growth in the economy. We have set out 200 pages and proposals

:30:06.:30:13.

today of how it can come about. It is funny how nobody shares your

:30:14.:30:16.

optimism, even the IFS, who said that under the most optimistic

:30:17.:30:21.

scenario, bringing our national debt would require a 6% reduction in

:30:22.:30:25.

total public spending, a rise of 9% on the basic rate of income tax, or

:30:26.:30:35.

a VAT rate of 28%. The IFS is projecting the analysis of the

:30:36.:30:39.

current arrangements. What I have saying is that if we have economic

:30:40.:30:43.

control and levers at our disposal, we can do things differently. If you

:30:44.:30:51.

look at the current performance just now, the Scottish economy is growing

:30:52.:30:56.

by 1.8%. The UK economy is growing by 1.3%. When we have got control,

:30:57.:31:07.

we can do things better. Corporation tax, where would you set it?

:31:08.:31:13.

We believe corporation tax in Scotland should be set at 3% lower

:31:14.:31:17.

than the rate in the rest of the UK, projected to be 18%. That would

:31:18.:31:25.

realise 27,000 jobs, new jobs creating new taxes, contributing new

:31:26.:31:33.

tax revenue. That's the expansionist agenda we want to take forward,

:31:34.:31:37.

rather than being tied to the austerity agenda of the UK

:31:38.:31:43.

government which has created further economic damage.

:31:44.:31:47.

Alistair Darling has said, why should voters in Scotland gamble on

:31:48.:31:52.

being potentially worse off than they are now? He says on the basis

:31:53.:31:57.

of the ISS reports, your strategy is in tatters.

:31:58.:32:02.

Alistair Darling is hardly a neutral commentator. Hardly a neutral

:32:03.:32:12.

observer. But why take the risk on this? It is a gamble, you said

:32:13.:32:15.

yourself, these are the possibilities.

:32:16.:32:22.

If Alistair Darling were standing here now, and was asked what the tax

:32:23.:32:28.

rate of the UK would be in future, he would not give you an answer.

:32:29.:32:34.

People in Scotland have to take an informed decision over whether they

:32:35.:32:38.

want to be in control of their affairs. My simple point is, based

:32:39.:32:44.

on the performance of the Scottish economy since devolution when we got

:32:45.:32:50.

some control, we have made a good job and improved long-term economic

:32:51.:32:53.

performance. If we have more economic levers, we can do much more

:32:54.:32:58.

to strengthen the Scottish economy and create real opportunities and

:32:59.:33:02.

tackle the damaging inequality that exists within the UK.

:33:03.:33:08.

John Swinney, will you stay with us to answer some questions by

:33:09.:33:14.

viewers? One of the issues is, should Scotland vote yes in the

:33:15.:33:19.

referendum and what would happen to Scottish Parliamentary seats?

:33:20.:33:26.

Scottish Parliamentary seats would still be contested in 2015. Scotland

:33:27.:33:32.

will still be part of the UK in 2015. We envisage the transition

:33:33.:33:41.

being completed in 2016. Does Scotland take on any UK debt,

:33:42.:33:47.

and how much? There are two ways you could

:33:48.:33:53.

consider this. One is on a population basis. So, they do take

:33:54.:33:59.

on the debt? I think, clearly, we would take on a proportion of the

:34:00.:34:13.

debt and a proportion of the assets. We can discuss this on a per capita

:34:14.:34:21.

basis. Or on a historic basis. On both of these measures, Scotland is

:34:22.:34:25.

in a strong position. Why can't Scots in England have a

:34:26.:34:29.

vote on independence? This is a very difficult issue. We

:34:30.:34:35.

want to look at it carefully. I quite understand the fact many

:34:36.:34:40.

people from Scotland live in England, may be temporarily. It is

:34:41.:34:46.

very difficult to establish a reliable franchise base for

:34:47.:34:51.

eligibility to vote. What we opted to do and what has been agreed is

:34:52.:34:57.

that we should take forward the franchise is used for electing the

:34:58.:35:03.

Scottish Parliament and the people eligible will be those eligible to

:35:04.:35:08.

vote in the referendum. Thank you for answering those

:35:09.:35:11.

questions in Dundee. These days, politicians argue how we

:35:12.:35:15.

protect it, who has the right to see it, and how it can help govern. So,

:35:16.:35:19.

it was only a matter of time before data became a tool for elections.

:35:20.:35:26.

2015 looks like being the first really digital election. And, as

:35:27.:35:30.

Giles has been finding out, thanks to some big American influence, in

:35:31.:35:33.

all parties' campaigns, data about us is fast becoming king.

:35:34.:35:36.

The sight of our politicians out glad-handing provokes three

:35:37.:35:38.

thoughts. One, oh, hell, it's election time.

:35:39.:35:42.

Two, they've been doing it the same way for years.

:35:43.:35:44.

Or, three, will it ever change? The answer to that is yes. For 2015,

:35:45.:35:53.

it has. What is fascinating is it will be a

:35:54.:35:58.

macro level campaign about big economic questions, living

:35:59.:36:02.

standards. And terribly micro, very localised and targeted.

:36:03.:36:11.

We can move from Mondeo man, Worcester woman, clumps of people.

:36:12.:36:18.

And work out which individuals in each seat are interested in hearing

:36:19.:36:21.

from us. Parties discuss campaigns in terms

:36:22.:36:26.

of an air war. Broadcasting message policy on media platforms. And

:36:27.:36:31.

ground war. Campaigning on the doorstep and in communities

:36:32.:36:34.

face-to-face. Both are crucial. But there may be a new front on the data

:36:35.:36:39.

war. The Conservatives have divided the

:36:40.:36:44.

lecture into eight tribes. Anxious, aspirational, disaffected, and each

:36:45.:36:52.

group will be targeted with personalised campaign literature and

:36:53.:36:55.

information. Data is allowing parties to not just

:36:56.:37:00.

target types of people, but understand which individuals in

:37:01.:37:03.

which seats are the ones which will make the biggest difference.

:37:04.:37:06.

The upshot is, instead of a mass mails hot, you could find your own

:37:07.:37:10.

bespoke message In those places where the seat may be decided on a

:37:11.:37:13.

narrow majority. You, yes, you, may have become very special, whether

:37:14.:37:19.

you like that or not! Research is based not just on what

:37:20.:37:23.

people say about particular policies, it is about their values

:37:24.:37:30.

and attitudes. MPs are being told to ask questions, do you think the

:37:31.:37:33.

future will be better for your children than for you? More

:37:34.:37:37.

promotional stuff rather than just information.

:37:38.:37:43.

Labour are countering in a slightly different way, because they do have

:37:44.:37:47.

a ground war advantage. They have more members, and are using them in

:37:48.:37:49.

community campaigning action, cleaning up public spaces, hosting

:37:50.:37:53.

soup kitchens. It could be an edge. Their best results were in seats

:37:54.:38:02.

with community building. The Labour Party will spread that out across

:38:03.:38:06.

the country. So, it is better at bringing people into the party by

:38:07.:38:10.

making sure they can contribute their time usefully. That gives the

:38:11.:38:13.

Labour Party a bigger volunteer force.

:38:14.:38:17.

It's the Americans who are blame for all this Both the Tories and Labour

:38:18.:38:20.

have Obama campaign veterans recruited. 2015 is looking like our

:38:21.:38:27.

social media election. What the parties have all worked out

:38:28.:38:31.

is people are far more likely to listen to their friends advising

:38:32.:38:35.

them to vote in a particular way than to listen to some random

:38:36.:38:39.

politician turning up on the doorstep. They are hoping to harness

:38:40.:38:43.

this power of Facebook and Twitter to encourage their existing

:38:44.:38:47.

supporters to get people to vote who are not necessarily already

:38:48.:38:48.

supporting them. But there's a warning to disciples

:38:49.:38:54.

of data. It is a national mission that

:38:55.:38:58.

ultimately will drive most of the change in the vote. If you focus on

:38:59.:39:02.

each little part you miss the big picture.

:39:03.:39:04.

And that means any new techniques will campaign hand-in-hand with the

:39:05.:39:05.

old. Giles Dilnot reporting.

:39:06.:39:11.

Iain Dale is still with me. Is this going to be the digital

:39:12.:39:15.

campaign that everyone will remember? It will be about Facebook

:39:16.:39:18.

and Twitter? I sat here four years ago, and that

:39:19.:39:25.

question was put to me. The last election was about the television

:39:26.:39:30.

election. The next election, depending on the debates, will

:39:31.:39:35.

probably also be the television election. The Internet will play an

:39:36.:39:40.

important part but I doubt it will be decided. E-mail is the most

:39:41.:39:44.

important thing. Of course the parties want to use Facebook and

:39:45.:39:48.

Twitter but you could be forgiven for asking if they are serious. The

:39:49.:39:54.

Conservatives launched a new website last week, one of the most dire I

:39:55.:40:00.

have seen. It is exclusive, cold, not interactive, it does everything

:40:01.:40:04.

a political website should not do. The other parties aren't that much

:40:05.:40:09.

better. Although they are slightly more welcoming. They have a long way

:40:10.:40:16.

to go. The Tory election guru says you can't fatten the pig on market

:40:17.:40:21.

day. You can't get into Internet campaigning if you months before the

:40:22.:40:23.

election. But the parties say it is under way.

:40:24.:40:32.

There are some MPs who have been helped by Twitter. It is the idea of

:40:33.:40:38.

personally tailoring politics I am intrigued by. They will cut through

:40:39.:40:44.

the geographical divide on constituencies and personally target

:40:45.:40:47.

people in conversations. This has been going on for years. In

:40:48.:40:54.

1997, I was running a campaign for the Tories and we used direct mail,

:40:55.:41:01.

that was a major innovation. That is now by e-mail. MPs have the value of

:41:02.:41:07.

incumbency. Grant Schapps, he has 23,000 e-mail addresses which he

:41:08.:41:14.

e-mails every week. Of course it will help. Most MPs have maybe if

:41:15.:41:20.

you hundreds. Their task is to build up their e-mail database.

:41:21.:41:24.

Central office will be going for the marginal seats. Tories have the

:41:25.:41:39.

40-40 strategy, keeping 40, targeting 40 marginal seats.

:41:40.:41:44.

Labour do not have as much money. Will they be thinking, this is a

:41:45.:41:47.

cheaper and effective way of targeting?

:41:48.:41:52.

All parties will be thinking that. There is a maximum each party can

:41:53.:41:58.

spend. Never ship is dying out, particularly for the Tories, they

:41:59.:42:00.

don't have the activists on the ground.

:42:01.:42:06.

Will that hand the Labour Party and advantage? Their membership is going

:42:07.:42:09.

up slightly, and they are slightly younger. The Lib Dems, their

:42:10.:42:19.

membership has halved. UKIP, they will mount in much stronger campaign

:42:20.:42:23.

because them ever ship has gone up. I don't see the next election being

:42:24.:42:27.

that much different from the last one in terms of what the parties are

:42:28.:42:30.

doing. Interesting.

:42:31.:42:34.

Should government force companies to increase the number of women on

:42:35.:42:37.

their boards? The EU Commission thinks so and, today, members of the

:42:38.:42:41.

European Parliament are debating the idea of a 40% target. Let's talk

:42:42.:42:47.

about this now with the Labour MEP Mary Honeyball. And Marina

:42:48.:42:50.

Yannakoudakis for the Conservatives. They both join me now from

:42:51.:42:56.

Strasbourg. Welcome to the programme. Mary

:42:57.:42:59.

Honeyball, would it be compulsory for companies to have 40% of women

:43:00.:43:05.

on their board? It will be, this is legislation. We are debating it this

:43:06.:43:10.

afternoon and boating tomorrow. Assuming it goes through the

:43:11.:43:13.

European Parliament, it will have to go through a process, go to the

:43:14.:43:20.

Council of ministers with intense negotiations. Should it go through,

:43:21.:43:27.

then it will be legislated. How would it be enforced?

:43:28.:43:34.

There are provisions in the report for sanctions which each member

:43:35.:43:38.

state will apply. It will be up to the member states to apply the

:43:39.:43:41.

sanctions but the report suggests what they are. That is something

:43:42.:43:47.

Labour MEPs are taking issue with. We think some sanctions in the

:43:48.:43:53.

report are too strong. There is 1's action which talks about liquidating

:43:54.:43:58.

companies if they do not agree. If they do not implement the demands.

:43:59.:44:03.

We will be voting against that. Marina, you are opposed to it in

:44:04.:44:08.

principle. The figures haven't improved much. The UK's -- the UK

:44:09.:44:17.

stands at ten best out of 20 member states.

:44:18.:44:22.

It is never going to be good enough, we have to keep working at it. We

:44:23.:44:30.

need more women, greater diversity. How we do it is where we differ. I

:44:31.:44:36.

think this report, this directive, will be using, it is dealing with

:44:37.:44:45.

the symptoms and not dealing with the actual problem. That is why we

:44:46.:44:49.

need to look further, looks at pathway, how to get women ready to

:44:50.:44:55.

go into boards, to make sure more women want to go into boards. A

:44:56.:45:02.

survey yesterday by a recruitment agency said that women do want to go

:45:03.:45:07.

on board but only 6% want compulsory quotas.

:45:08.:45:14.

Figures have worked in other countries. Norway has seen an

:45:15.:45:20.

increase from 9% up to 40% in under a decade. You can't reach those

:45:21.:45:25.

figures without quotas. It has indeed. It has seen 40% in

:45:26.:45:33.

nonexecutive positions. It has seen no increase in executive positions.

:45:34.:45:37.

It has seen no increase in other levels of business. The 40% they

:45:38.:45:43.

have, one woman holds 90 posts! I wonder what sort of women they are

:45:44.:45:50.

putting in, with what quotas. She is wrong to say that Norway has not had

:45:51.:46:00.

an increase in executive directors. They have gone up. It has been up by

:46:01.:46:06.

3%. I agree with Marina that we need to make sure women are ready, that

:46:07.:46:11.

they can go on boards, that they want to, that they have the training

:46:12.:46:16.

and experience. But they are not mutually exclusive. Creditors does

:46:17.:46:19.

not mean you don't take those measures. Of course we need to make

:46:20.:46:24.

sure women can do the job. I firmly believe women can become

:46:25.:46:29.

nonexecutive directors. There are enough good women out there. They

:46:30.:46:33.

are just as good as men. That is what we should be doing, encouraging

:46:34.:46:38.

them, not just catapulting them or creating posts. They need to get

:46:39.:46:44.

there on merit. If you just have a quota, a random quote, you are

:46:45.:46:49.

encouraging tokenism, on cue? You are going to have women who aren't

:46:50.:46:56.

experienced enough. I don't believe you will. There are women who are

:46:57.:46:59.

experienced enough. The Commissioner who has been piloting this through

:47:00.:47:05.

the commission has been out to business schools around Europe, and

:47:06.:47:09.

she has one in who are ready to do these jobs. We know the -- she has

:47:10.:47:15.

women who are ready to do these jobs. We know the women are out

:47:16.:47:19.

there. There are, at the moment, enough. Women are just as good at

:47:20.:47:25.

this as men. There is a good business case for having women on

:47:26.:47:30.

boards. Fiona Wolf has made this point often, that diversity on

:47:31.:47:35.

company boards has improved performance. There are good business

:47:36.:47:42.

reasons for doing this. Let's look at the business reaction. Germany

:47:43.:47:48.

has agreed a women's quota. They will be required to have at least

:47:49.:47:53.

30% of women on supervisory boards. Clearly, they don't think it's bad

:47:54.:47:58.

for business. You are right, Germany did just announced that. What I am

:47:59.:48:02.

saying is that it is not up to the EU. It Germany would like to do it,

:48:03.:48:07.

it is up to the member state. They will be having problems, though. I

:48:08.:48:11.

believe they have said they don't know how they will enforce it, and

:48:12.:48:15.

they are saying that if they have these 30% seat and they are not

:48:16.:48:19.

full, they will keep them empty. How good that will be for business, I

:48:20.:48:23.

don't know. The point is, the EU is coming up with a piece of

:48:24.:48:27.

legislation that is one size fits all. Really, we need to let member

:48:28.:48:34.

states decide. Stay with us. What do you think about this idea? Marina's

:48:35.:48:45.

first point is crucial. If the British government or political

:48:46.:48:48.

party was to have that policy, fair enough. I think Mary is also right,

:48:49.:48:53.

many companies are missing out on talent by not promoting women to

:48:54.:48:59.

boards. Are the women there, though, in the first place? If not now, then

:49:00.:49:05.

they will be in five or ten years. This is something that in time will

:49:06.:49:12.

correct itself. Very slowly, though. Maybe, but in FTSE 100 companies,

:49:13.:49:19.

the number of women has shot up. What about that point, but why

:49:20.:49:24.

should the EU force this on member states? Firstly I would like to say

:49:25.:49:35.

that the number has gone up on FTSE 100 boards. It has gone by 9% in two

:49:36.:49:42.

years. It is still slow. That is in the UK where we are making a big

:49:43.:49:45.

effort. There are many countries in the EU who are nowhere near that.

:49:46.:49:49.

This is a legislation to bring everybody up to a similar level.

:49:50.:49:55.

That is the's role in it. If member states are better, some are ahead of

:49:56.:49:59.

the EU, that is good. That is what we would like to see. We want more

:50:00.:50:05.

parity and more equality. That is so that all member states can take

:50:06.:50:07.

advantage of the talent of women out there. Thank you. As we have already

:50:08.:50:17.

discussed today, whether Scotland votes for independence next year or

:50:18.:50:21.

not, war powers will be handed to Edinburgh because of new legislation

:50:22.:50:28.

passed last year and Westminster. -- more powers. Earlier this year,

:50:29.:50:31.

David Cameron announced the world 's semi would get more power over

:50:32.:50:34.

things like stamp duty and income tax. -- the Welsh Assembly. Where

:50:35.:50:42.

does this leave England? Eddie Bone leads the campaign for owning this

:50:43.:50:46.

Parliament. We have also been joined by Barry Sheerman, who backs the

:50:47.:50:49.

idea of regional assemblies across England. Make your case, then.

:50:50.:50:55.

England was left out in 1998 by the Blair government. It didn't register

:50:56.:51:03.

that England was a country. They gave devolution to Wales and

:51:04.:51:05.

Scotland without knowing the full consequences. What we are arguing

:51:06.:51:11.

for is that the people of England deserve a First Minister, fairness,

:51:12.:51:18.

and equality. Presently, not one of the main political parties and even

:51:19.:51:22.

produces a manifesto on English policies. Because devolution is

:51:23.:51:29.

growing, there are clear policy divides in health, the NHS, and

:51:30.:51:34.

within education. We need to see the people of England having a voice,

:51:35.:51:37.

and a First Minister. What is wrong with that, Barry Sheerman? We have a

:51:38.:51:45.

British Parliament that is biased towards England. 53 million people

:51:46.:51:49.

in this country live in England, and only 10 million in the other

:51:50.:51:55.

devolved assemblies. We have power for England in a very interesting

:51:56.:52:01.

way. I'm not a nationalist. I don't mind the fact that we have to talk

:52:02.:52:07.

about English nationalism. I don't want that to become a rallying cry.

:52:08.:52:16.

Isn't it true that England dominates? It makes our campaign

:52:17.:52:25.

easier because it puts it on to the political agenda. We have to make

:52:26.:52:29.

sure the system is fair. Barry is encouraging one-way. It is not an

:52:30.:52:32.

English parliament, it is a UK Parliament. -- Barry is incorrect in

:52:33.:52:41.

one way. Health and education are very separate. We need a First

:52:42.:52:47.

Minister, he has to accept that, and there are clear divisions now

:52:48.:52:51.

between England, Scotland and Wales. There is such a thing as positive

:52:52.:52:55.

national, the same as in Scotland and Wales. If there was a democratic

:52:56.:53:05.

upsurge for this. . . I would support it. All of the polling I

:53:06.:53:08.

have seen as shown indifference about this. People are happy with

:53:09.:53:16.

the status quo. I'd share a group of MPs. -- I chair a group of MPs. All

:53:17.:53:26.

we see in the regions is one strong region, London and the south-east,

:53:27.:53:29.

dominating the conversation. That is wrong. Who would be your First

:53:30.:53:37.

Minister? That is for the people of England to decide. He stuck in this

:53:38.:53:49.

issue of regionalism. There is no support for that. It is nice to see

:53:50.:54:00.

you, Iain Dale. I have only ever met you on Twitter! There is not a great

:54:01.:54:12.

demand for this. Oh, there is. The Parliament use Jess will be

:54:13.:54:20.

dominated by Boris. -- you suggest. It will be dominated by the South,

:54:21.:54:24.

wouldn't it? It would be dominated by England, which is the point Eddie

:54:25.:54:30.

makes. England deserves its own parliament, I have been sympathetic

:54:31.:54:34.

to that idea. Barry is wrong about the polling. But it depends on when

:54:35.:54:40.

they do the polling. If there is a major Scottish issue, we support

:54:41.:54:45.

finding less Parliament rises. It doesn't have to be bureaucratic, it

:54:46.:54:48.

doesn't have to have a separate building. -- the support for an

:54:49.:54:57.

English Parliament rises. This has been going on for years. I remember

:54:58.:55:04.

going to a group of yours in 2003. Nothing has changed since then. You

:55:05.:55:09.

haven't with a figurehead. I do agree. We have an event tomorrow. We

:55:10.:55:19.

are finding that a number of MPs are expressing concern. We are all aware

:55:20.:55:24.

that the status quo cannot exist any more. There is quite a bit of

:55:25.:55:31.

support for this in all parties. I don't know if Barry would agree, but

:55:32.:55:38.

it is below the surface. But there is a difference between caring

:55:39.:55:43.

passionately about England... Yellow Matt Frei I do, thank you. -- I do,

:55:44.:55:57.

thank you. English nationalism doesn't have to be a negative thing.

:55:58.:56:05.

When the England flag was associated with the BNP, that was negative. It

:56:06.:56:12.

is no longer the case. I have seen no traction for another layer...

:56:13.:56:18.

Would it lead to the break-up of the union? We are looking at crisis

:56:19.:56:25.

point. The first is the Scottish referendum. If Scotland votes yes,

:56:26.:56:28.

it would mean the dissolution of the UK. The agreement was with the

:56:29.:56:32.

Kingdom of England and the Kingdom of Scotland. England needs to have

:56:33.:56:39.

people negotiating on their behalf. We have just seen John Swinney

:56:40.:56:42.

talking about, would they take the debt. We need people to represent

:56:43.:56:50.

England. That is the Prime Minister's job. How would a

:56:51.:56:55.

relationship between the First Minister and the Prime Minister

:56:56.:57:00.

work? We are looking at clearly defined areas. And politicians

:57:01.:57:09.

always stick to those! We are seeing growth of a Welsh identity on home

:57:10.:57:14.

policies. There are clear differences between a federal system

:57:15.:57:18.

of UK policies, which would be foreign policy, defence, etc, and

:57:19.:57:28.

actual national issues. You would like to see the end of the UK

:57:29.:57:33.

Parliament? You are saying you would like to have four separate

:57:34.:57:38.

governments. The rationale of you are committed to breaking England

:57:39.:57:48.

are completely. -- your rationale, you are committed to breaking

:57:49.:57:54.

England down completely. There is no doubt that an incoming Labour

:57:55.:58:01.

government could look at what the Coalition have created in terms of

:58:02.:58:07.

their local economic partnerships. They could easily be democratised.

:58:08.:58:12.

City regions could be the way forward. Don't underestimate that

:58:13.:58:21.

there is emphasis on democracy but not on English nationalism. We have

:58:22.:58:25.

to finish there. There is just time to find out the answer to our quiz.

:58:26.:58:30.

The question was, how do Ed Miliband's team refer to Ed Balls'

:58:31.:58:41.

team, according to the newspaper? All four could apply. I wouldn't say

:58:42.:58:47.

that. And it's? No, Pirates! That is all today. Thanks to all of my

:58:48.:58:50.

guests. Goodbye.

:58:51.:58:55.

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